Church News

The Parish Word

From Ballinora’s Weekly Newsletter

 


17th November, 2019

The Word Alive – Going Out with a Bang!

NIGHTMARE OR REALITY? The Word of God this weekend contains vivid nightmare-like images and language about the end of the world as we know it. But Luke makes several points: Jesus was able to read the signs of the times – his followers must too! Many things we rely on are only passing things; don’t rely on them for salvation. Troubles will always come, but followers of Jesus will all stand firm. Faith will always be challenged and families divided.
Questions we might answer: Jesus is presented as a prophet, capable of reading the signs of the times, and one who offered wise and insightful advice on how to cope with difficult times. Who are the people we see who act like this in the troubled times we live in today? Maybe you yourself have been a calming influence in the face of turmoil within your own life circumstances? Maybe we could pray for the leaders of the world.  Things can change so quickly for us. Jesus alerts his listeners to the transitory nature of human grandeur and splendour. How have you been reminded of this truth? Sudden illness? Sudden bereavement? Loss of job? What lessons has this given you about life? In any walk of life troubles will come. Jesus encourages his listeners to stand firm in such circumstances, telling them ‘your endurance will win you your lives’. When you are in the midst of inner turmoil and/or outer trouble or opposition, what have you found gives you the strength and ability to endure?  Does faith help? Does hope? Does loving and being loved? Our faith will always be opposed or challenged. Are we troubled by the loss of faith among children, relatives or friends? Faith is a gift, and it often depends on how that gift is cherished and nourished. But we can’t force it. Sometimes the ups and downs of life distance people from God. Other times they encourage them to search for meaning in life. Does apathy around us weaken our own commitment? Stand firm is today’s message!

STATION MASSES:
Sincere thanks to Darina Callanan and extended family for hosting the Station Mass for Ballinora Cross to School last Wednesday night. Special remembrance was made of Markie Callanan who died recently, on what would have been his birthday.

Two more Station Masses remain: The Station Mass for Ballinora Kingsland to Middle Hillwill take place in the home of Pat and Rosaleen Tuite on Friday November 22nd at 8pm. The Station Mass for Castlewhite will take place in the home of Bernie Murphy on +.

AUTUMN DUES:
The envelopes for the Autumn Dues have been distributed to the homes of all the areas in which Station Masses have not been celebrated. Please return these envelopes as soon as possible. The income for priests comes mostly from these voluntary offerings (Spring, Easter, Autumn and Christmas Dues) four times a year. Thank you.

MARRIAGE CARE COLLECTION:
The Special Collection for Marriage Care Services in the Diocese of Cork and Ross will be taken up this weekend. This collection supports current services such as Accord Centre in Bantry.  It will also fund the provision of pre-marriage preparation following a review of the current situation in the diocese

FEAST OF CHRIST THE KING -EXPOSITION OF THE BLESSED SACRAMENT                                                        Next Sunday, the last Sunday of the Church’s Year,is the Feast of Christ the King. It is a special celebration of our Faith in Jesus, Lord of our lives. The Blessed Sacrament will be placed on the altar for Adoration and prayer from 6-8pm. It’s an opportunity to spend some time in quietness, bringing ourselves, our families and our needs before the Lord.


10th November, 2019

November Reflections

An Autumn Psalm of Fearlessness

I am surrounded by a peaceful ebbing
As creation bows to the mystery of life;
All that grows and lives must give up life,
Yet it does not really die.
As plants surrender their life,
Bending, brown and wrinkled,
And yellow leaves of trees
Float to my lawn like parachute troops,
They do so in a sea of serenity.

I hear no fearful cries from creation,
No screams of terror,
As death daily devours
Once-green and growing life.
Peaceful and calm is autumn’s swan song,
For she understands
That hidden in winter’s death-grip
Is spring’s openhanded
Full-brimmed breath of life.

It is not a death rattle that sounds
Over fields and backyard fences;
Rather I hear a lullaby
Softly swaying upon the autumn wind.
Sleep in peace, all that lives;
Slumber secure, all that is dying,
For in every fall there is the rise
Whose sister’s name is spring.
God and Resurrection are awaiting.

 (This poem by Edward Hayes is widely known, and has brought courage and hope to many people who have lost loved ones, or who are themselves in the Autumn of life.)

AUTUMN DUES
Envelopes have been distributed to the areas in which there is no Station Mass.  Please return them to the Church or to Fr Declan. The Autumn and Spring Dues, together with the Christmas and Easter Offerings are what make up the majority of a priest’s income.

NOVENA FOR THE HOLY SOULS
Our Novena of Masses for our deceased relatives and friends will conclude this Monday, November 11th at 7.30pm.

Weekday masses will return to their usual time of 9am.  You are welcome to join the School for a special November Mass this Wednesday morning at 9.10am.

STATION MASSES:
The Station Mass for Ballinora, – School to Ballinora Cross – will take place in the home of Darina and Patch Callanan on Wednesday November 13th at 8pm.

A Station Mass for Ballinora Kingsland to Middle Hill will take place in the home of Pat and Rosaleen Tuite on Friday November 22nd at 8pm.

A Station Mass for Castlewhite will take place in the home of Bernie Murphy on Saturday November 30th, at 11am.

RECENT DEATH:
Sincere condolences to the family of Denis O’Riordan of Ballyhank who passed away this week after an extended period of illness. We extend our love and support to Sheila his wife, to his sons and daughters and to his extended family, neighbours and friends.

REFLECTION
Let us not look for you only in memory,
Where we would grow lonely without you.
You would want us to find you in presence,
Beside us when beauty brightens,
When kindness grows
And music echoes eternal tones.
May you continue to inspire us:
To enter each day with a generous heart
To serve the call of courage, and love.
(From ‘Benedictus’ – John O’Donoghue)


3rd November, 2019

Autumn Leaves – and Holy Souls

Shorter days, longer nights, bare branches, gales and rain, plants losing leaves……. It’s a lonely time of the year. November brings back so many memories for so many people. People now dead who have been such an important part of our lives. We miss them.

But they are never more present to us than when we celebrate the Eucharist. Jesus is the great bridge between this world and the next. When we celebrate the presence of Jesus, we remember that he has said ‘Where I am, there will my servant be also’. November is a time for remembering – remembering Jesus, and remembering our loved ones. Keep joining us for our November Novena. Masses this week at 7.30pm, finishing on Monday 11th.

Zacchaeus – a Changed Man

Zacchaeus was small. Probably bullied, grew up with a chip on his shoulder, an inferiority complex. Probably needed a job to revenge society. Collected taxes for the Romans. Increased the levies through threats; fiddled the books. No friends; excluded from social gatherings, treated with suspicion.

The turning point: One day, his inner needs were so strong that he climbed a tree. The crowd laughed; he didn’t care. He knew he needed to see Jesus. And Jesus saw him! For the first time in his life, someone looked up at him instead of down on him, And what a difference! Jesus offered to dine with him. He was changed utterly! No more inferiority, no more cheating.  Now there was self-acceptance,, enthusiasm and joy for the first time.

Meeting and knowing Jesus, letting him look at us with love, transforms us. Knowing we are loved, accepted, valued for who we are –tall, small, fat, thin, old,  young, rich or poor, strong or weak –only our faith in God can give us this. Zacchaeus is every one of us that needs more belief in ourselves! Jesus wants to help us!

NOVENA FOR THE HOLY SOULS
On weekdays from Monday 4th November until Monday November 11th, Masses for the Novena will be at 7.30pm.

STATION MASSES:
Sincere thanks to Pat and Irene Desmond, who hosted the Station Mass for Heatherfield last Friday night. Their granddaughters Eabha and Croia welcomed everyone to ‘the priest’s party’. Buíochas also to Pat and Eileen Sheehan, for hosting the Inniskenny/Knocknalyre/Abbey View Station Mass last Saturday morning. Little Aoibheann Carley stole the show. One of our youngest ever attendees! A Station Mass for Ballinora – School to Ballinora Cross – will take place in the home of Darina and Patch Callanan on Wednesday November 13th at 8pm.  A Station Mass for Ballinora- Kingsland to  Middle Hill will take place in the home of Pat  and Rosaleen Tuite on Friday November  22nd at 8pm.

RECENT DEATH:
Our sincere sympathies as a parish go to the Dorgan family of Greybrook, especially Tom, Alan and Rob, on the recent death of Abbie. May she rest in peace.

BLESSING OF THE GRAVES:
A short blessing of the graves in the church grounds will take place following the 7pm Remembrance Mass this weekend, and also following the 10am Mass on Sunday Nov 3rd. The blessing in Inniskenny Graveyard will take place at 12 noon on Sunday 3rd. The Blessing in Chetwynd will take place on Sunday November 10th at 3pm. The blessing in Our Lady and St John’s will be on Saturday 9th, at 12 noon.

RECENT WEDDING:
Our sincere congratulations to Maeve O’Hare and Robert O’Mahony who were married in St James Church last Friday, October 25th.


27th October, 2019

Pharisee or Tax Collector?

Contrasts: The Master is at it again!! Telling stories that really upset and confuse us. A pillar of society, our Pharisee, praying as he was taught to; up near the holy place, telling God how much he obeys his commands, doing all the law requires, thanking God for the privilege of being born rich, intelligent, honest. And Jesus criticises him!! And a swindler, working for our enemies, who shouldn’t even be left into the synagogue, mumbles a few words of prayer to God – and Jesus praises him! What is the world coming to?

The Good News? What a consolation to all of us who feel sinful, unworthy, or self-critical. Others may look down on us; or we look down on ourselves, but Jesus values us! What a joy to those of us who find it hard to pray! Short sincere cries from the heart are better than big mouthfuls of self-praise and attitude! What a joy if it’s hard to go into a church, or we feel we’ve no place there! Even at the back door God hears us. Is it a mistranslation that the Pharisee ‘said these prayers to himself’? Was he in fact praying to himself as God, or a God of his own making? The prayer of the tax collector was real, sincere, uncomplicated.

Humility: The impression is given that humility is admitting you’re a sinner, beating your breast, hardly daring to raise your eyes to God. Contrast this with Mary’s reaction when told she was to be the Mother of God. (Also Luke’s Gospel). ‘The Almighty has done great things for me… all generations will call me blessed. Holy is his name’. True humility is acknowledging realistically your giftedness, but knowing it’s a gift from God – to be used for others! Prayer isn’t about long formal prayers, or ‘being seen’, or occupying places of honour. Prayer is about sincerity and honesty; talking to God from the heart. God doesn’t want us with a poor self- image, or lost in self- criticism. Humility comes from ‘humus’, ‘the ground’, and it means ‘to be down to earth’. Isn’t it a compliment if someone thinks we are ‘down to earth’? Not snobs, full of ourselves, insincere nor dreamers, but real, ‘grounded’, honest and approachable.

STATION MASSES:

A Station Mass for Ballinora, – School to Ballinora Cross – will take place in the home of Darina and Patch Callanan on Wednesday November 13th at 8pm.

A Station Mass for Ballinora Kingsland to Middle Hill will take place in the home of Pat and Rosaleen Tuite on Friday November 22nd at 8pm.

NOVEMBER PARISH REMEMBRANCE MASS
The annual Parish Remembrance Mass, when we remember in a special way those who have died from the parish in the last year, but also include all our deceased family members, relatives and friends, will take place on next Saturday November 2nd, at 7pm. In particular we will extend a warm welcome to the families of the late Betty Lane, Ella Cantillon, Dermot Herlihy, Philomena Lyne, Mona Forde, Canon Donal Linehan, Ann Murphy, Mark Callanan, Carl Mulcahy and Mary Keogh.

BANK HOLIDAY MONDAY
October 28th Bank Holiday: No morning Mass

FEAST OF ALL SAINTS: Friday November 1st
Only one Mass will take place on November 1st  the Holyday itself, at 7pm

BLESSING OF THE GRAVES
A short blessing of the graves in the church grounds will take place following the Remembrance Mass at 7pm on November 2nd, and also following the 10am Mass on Sunday November 3rdThe blessing in Inniskenny Graveyard will take place at 12 noon on Sunday 3rd.

RECENTLY MARRIED
Our sincere congratulations to Orla Murphy of Inniskenny and Philip Hartley, who were mattied in St James Church last Saturday, October 19th.


19th October, 2019

Mission Sunday: Praying, Persistence, Poverty and Priorities

Victims: Luke tells us that Jesus told today’s story about the unjust judge and the widow so that we would pray continually and not lose heart. And that is fine at one level. Christians have to be people of prayer, and people of hope – and the two go  together. But last week, Luke highlighted a Samaritan leper who prayed in desperation. This week he highlights a poor widow with an enemy. Both of them were people without rights or respect, on the bottom rung of society.

Survivors: The woman wins her case by persistence and by knowing she is right; the Samaritan leper cries out for help to Jesus and he hears and heals him. But they are the survivors, the lucky ones. They are the ones who had the faith, and inner strength, and the courage of their convictions. And they got heard! Someone responded. Jesus responded. The unjust judge eventually responded.

Supporters: Always a critical factor when a government passes a budget cut is: Who is likely to object least? The silent, the unimportant voters, the elderly; – often their allowances are cut or not increased. Jesus and Luke looked at those who were disrespected and unimportant in the eyes of society, and the Jesus of Luke especially, healed them. Jesus actively looked for the poor, the sick the blind, the lame, to restore their dignity and show them God loved them. He wants us, his Church today, to do the same. Many of the farmers of the Third World haven’t a chance; the uneducated of Yemen, Indonesia, Bangladesh……. The world is full of injustice and inequality. Buying Fair Trade products can help. Trócaire, Bóthar, Oxfam…. can help. Our Mission Sunday collection, once a year, can help – with help for education and schools, hospitals and self-help. God is not an unjust judge. He encourages us to care….. and share! Supporters badly needed!

STATION MASSES:
A Station Mass for Heatherfield will take place in the home of Pat and Irene Desmond, on next Friday night October 25th at 7.30pm. Please note earlier time. A Station Mass for Inniskenny/Knocknalyre/Old Abbey will take place on Saturday morning next, at 11am. A Station Mass for Ballinora, – School to Ballinora Cross – will take place in the home of Darina and Patch Callanan on Wednesday November 13th at 8pm. A Station Mass for Ballinora Kingsland to Middle Hill will take place in the home of Pat and Rosaleen Tuite on Friday November 22nd at 8pm.

DATES FOR THE DIARY: NOVEMBER PARISH REMEMBRANCE MASS ETC
The annual Parish Remembrance Mass, when we remember in a special way those who have died from the parish in the last year, but also include all our deceased family members, relatives and friends, will take place on Saturday November 2nd,  at 7pm.

In particular we will extend a warm welcome to the families of the late Betty Lane, Ella Cantillon, Dermot Herlihy, Philomena Lyne, Mona Forde, Canon Donal Linehan, Ann Murphy, Mark Callanan, Carl Mulcahy and Mary Keogh.

Masses for the Novena will be at 7.30pm.
November 1st Holyday: only one Mass on November 1st at 7pm
October 28th Bank Holiday: No morning Mass

MISSION SUNDAY:
The collection this weekend goes to the Society for the Propagation of the Faith. But faith in Jesus and concern for human needs for education, water and healthcare all go together, and they do. Please contribute as best you can

RECENTLY MARRIED
Sincere congratulations to Aoife Crowley of Corbally and Keith Donnellan of Turners Cross, who were married last Saturday in St. James Church, Ballinora. Blessings and Love to them.


13th October, 2019

Inclusivity – a Welcoming Community?

Excluded? Samaritans were a different breed of people from the Jews. The same God, but separated by history. Different customs and places of worship. Heretics and foreigners, they were excluded and despised by the ‘true’ Israelite Jews. In our society today, we are surrounded by people who differ from us in faith and ethnic origin. There is clear evidence of racism, fear and exclusion around us. Every country is afraid of refugees. Jesus challenges us. He healed a non-Jew, he took pity on him, he praised his faith. What is he saying to us the Church, his Body today?                                                                                                              

The Good News: Luke knew all about this Jesus he was writing about. He also knew the early Christian community were still somewhat divided into former Jews and former outsiders. His sympathy was with the outsiders: bring them in! Their faith in Jesus would save them! They didn’t have to know or observe all the Jewish traditions. He knows the Jesus who healed the dreaded lepers – and worse! – Samaritan lepers! would reach out to the marginalised and excluded, the untouchables. I hope we are hearing this message today.                       

Giving Thanks and Reaching Out: Luke also knew that the early Mass, the breaking of bread in a home, accompanied by the words and stories of Jesus, was a thanksgiving (the word Eucharist means ‘giving thanks’), a source of healing, and an outreach to the poor and marginalised. It was at the heart of the identity of a follower of Jesus. A collection for the needs of the poor was taken up each time they gathered. This story of Jesus summed it all up: Seeing the needy, reaching out to heal, including the untouchables, showing the power of faith to save…. Luke wants us to know, and imitate this Jesus. Is our faith community today too restricted, too cosy, too exclusive? Are we afraid to touch the lepers? It was the stranger, the marginalised, who experienced healing and who came back to thank Jesus. He had most need of it!  Or maybe we ourselves sometimes feel we are the leper. Maybe we need to be touched by Jesus?

LAST CALL FOR AUTUMN STATION MASSES:
Masses have been arranged for Heatherfield and Inniskenny for the end of this month, and for Ballinora School to Cross for Mid-November. If anyone else wishes to host a Mass, please let Fr Declan know as soon as possible.

THE JOY OF LOVE IN MARRIAGE.
A Marriage Enrichment Weekend offers married couples of all ages in a good relationship private time to rekindle the joy of their love. The next (residential) Weekend will be held at The Lake Hotel Killarney from 15th -17th Nov. For info.and to book, visit www.marriageencounter.ie <http://www.marriageencounter.ie/> or phone 064-6644319 or 086-6095168

OCTOBER – MONTH OF THE MISSIONS
Pope Francis has declared October 2019 to be an Extraordinary Month of Mission (EMM2019). This special month of prayer and action calls us all to renew our missionary commitment by sharing the Good News of Jesus with all people! During the month, pray this prayer:
Heavenly Father, when your only begotten Son Jesus Christ rose from the dead, He commissioned His followers to ‘go and make disciples of all nations’ and you remind us that through our Baptism we are made sharers in the mission of the Church. Empower us by the gifts of the Holy Spirit to be courageous and zealous in bearing witness to the Gospel, so that the mission entrusted to the Church, which is still very far from completion, may find new and efficacious expressions that bring life and light to the world. Help us make it possible for all peoples to experience the saving  love and mercy of Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, One God, forever and ever..

This year’s Mission Sunday collection will be the weekend of Oct.20th .

SINCERE CONDOLENCES:
We extend our sincere sympathies to the family relatives and friends of Mary Keogh whose funeral took place during the week. We pray in a special way for her husband John, her daughter Fiona, and her sons Gavin and Cilllian.


6th October, 2019

Doubts? Hang in There!

Faith: Two aspects of faith today in the Gospel – firstly: increase it, use it, trust it. Secondly: if you believe, then be God’s servant.
Faith Crisis Today: So many influential people today, when asked if they believe, reply ‘I’m not really a religious person, but I am a spiritual person.’ Or they say ‘I’m not a regular Mass-goer, but I believe there’s something. I believe in God.’ For many, the loss of faith in the Church as an institution and in formal structures and worship, has contributed to the danger of each person being isolated in their own unique faith. For a healthy, balanced, Christian spirituality, all of the following elements are recommended: – Faith in Jesus is Scripture-based; community-based; sacrament-based, and prayer and worship-based.

Scripture-based: The Old Testament, the faith of the Jewish people, laid the foundations for belief: One God, the Commandments, the Messiah. The New Testament gives the stories of Jesus and the developing faith of the Early Church. Knowing the Jesus of the Gospels is central. The Gospels are historical documents about a real person.                                                                   

Community-based: from the beginning, Christians shared their faith-stories with each other, met in their houses, and Paul especially developed a basic sound Doctrine: Jesus as Son of God, and his Death and Resurrection as a saving event, central to Faith.

Sacrament-based: Baptism and Eucharist are accepted as the basic scripture-based Sacraments of a faith community. Ministry of Elders, the laying on of hands, forgiveness of sins, and anointing of the sick are in the early communities. Confirmation and Marriage came later.                                                                                                                                                        

Prayer and Worship-based: To worship with other like-minded people always supports faith. It’s very lonely and isolated to just have your own unique take on faith. Christians worshipped in the synagogues, then in houses, then in ‘churches’ built to take large numbers for formal worship. There is also no substitute for personal prayer and quiet time with God, as evidenced by countless holy men and women down through the ages. Formal, informal, asking, thanking, praising, prayer of intercession, meditation….. Water and fertilise the Mulberry Seed! Be a faith-full servant of God.

STATION MASSES</u :
Would anybody like to host a Station Mass, weeknight or Saturday morning, up to mid-Nov in the following areas: Ballyshoneen; Kingsland to middle Ballinora Hill; Castlewhite;  Ballymaw; Ballinvoltig/Ballinvrinsig, Sraleigh, Ballyhank, Windsor, or Lower Ballinora? Masses have been arranged only for Inniskenny, Heatherfield and School to Ballinora Cross.

THE JOY OF LOVE IN MARRIAGE.
A Marriage Enrichment Weekend offers married couples of all ages in a good relationship private time to rekindle the joy of their love. The next (residential) Weekend will be held at The Lake Hotel Killarney from 15th -17th Nov. For info. and to book, visit www.marriageencounter.ie <http://www.marriageencounter.ie/> or phone 064-6644319 or 086-6095168

OCTOBER – MONTH OF THE MISSIONS
Pope Francis has declared October 2019 to be an Extraordinary Month of Mission (EMM2019). This special month of prayer and action calls us all to renew our missionary commitment by sharing the Good News of Jesus with all people! During the month, pray this prayer:
Heavenly Father, when your only begotten Son Jesus Christ rose from the dead, He commissioned His followers to ‘go and make disciples of all nations’ and you remind us that through our Baptism we are made sharers in the mission of the Church. Empower us by the gifts of the Holy Spirit to be courageous and zealous in bearing witness to the Gospel, so that the mission entrusted to the Church, which is still very far from completion, may find new and efficacious expressions that bring life and light to the world. Help us make it possible for all peoples to experience the saving  love and mercy of Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, One God, forever and ever.. This year’s Mission Sunday collection will be theweekend of Oct.20th .

QUARTERLY COLLECTION FOR DIOCESAN NEEDS
The fourth quarterly collection for the various needs of the Diocese will be taken up next weekend, October 12th/13th. Bishop Gavin once again asks for our generous support.


29th September, 2019

Bumper Sticker – Random Acts of Kindness

A Challenge: Parking today at Aldi, behind a van with the bumper sticker: “How many acts of Random Kindness are you guilty of today?” was a life-giving experience, an examination of conscience. A challenge to smile, to look around. An elderly man asks for €2 for the supermarket trolley. Only one in the pocket, but willingly handed over. Sure we have plenty of bags in the boot! An acquaintance getting into a car across the car park, when greeted, gives a story of sadness and grief, but so glad to chat for a few minutes. Drives away with a blessing and a prayer. On the way home, decided to ring an out-of-touch friend – thrilled!

Dives – the Miser, the Miserable: Would the rich man in the Gospel today have understood this bumper slogan? He probably never carried out one random act of kindness in his whole life. Calculating interest rates, lending to the poor at rates they could never repay, dining on rich food and fine wines, totally ignoring the poverty at his doorstep. And he lived in the delusion that because he was rich, this showed he was totally blessed by God. In the Gospel, he is shown in agony, with an uncrossable gulf between him and God’s kingdom.

Jesus the Storyteller: What a dream-shatterer Jesus was! Is it any wonder the wealthy and powerful hated him! What a totally counter-cultural story he told! A total reversal of fortune, in the next world, for those who place their hopes in this world and its fortunes. The Gospel-writer Luke is with us for several weeks giving us the teaching of Jesus on money and wealth. 2000 years on, nothing has changed. In most countries the rich are getting richer, and the poor are getting poorer, and many of the wealthy don’t seem to care. If we were to be sent to prison condemned for caring too much about the needs of others, the prisons would be empty! I think Jesus would love bumper stickers! Maybe we should hand some out after Mass each week. Especially: “How many acts of Random Kindness are you guilty of today?”

AUTUMN STATIONS -TAKERS PLEASE?
Would anybody like to host a Station Mass, weeknight or Saturday morning, up to mid-November in the following areas: Ballyshoneen; Kingsland to middle Ballinora Hill; Castlewhite;  Ballymaw; Ballinvoltig/Ballinvrinsig, Sraleigh, Ballyhank, Windsor, or Lower Ballinora? Masses have been arranged only for Inniskenny and Heatherfield. The Station Mass was always a wonderful way to encourage and build up community, as well as provide a more intimate celebration of the Eucharist. No fuss needed. No hassle. Just a cuppa and a bun, and the Lord’s presence brought out into the homes and community.

EXPOSITION OF THE BLESSED SACRAMENT WOULD YOU LIKE TO COME?
Volunteers are constantly welcomed to join the regular group of 25 or so who come to spend a quiet hour with Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament.  The Blessed Sacrament is exposed on the altar from 9.30 to 12 on Friday mornings and from 6 to 9pm on Wednesday evenings. It’s a great time to spend a while in silence and peace and bring our lives before God. People are welcome to drop in for 10 minutes or any period during that time, but if someone can commit to a longer period reasonably regularly, please contact Fr Declan or Margaret Drinan. It is such a calming and lovely gift to give to yourself and to the parish.

RECENT DEATH
We extend our sincere condolences to the family, relatives, friends and neighbours of Carl Mulcahy of Jimmy’s Cross whose funeral took place during the week. We assure Carmel his wife, and Brendan and Kevin his sons, of our prayers and support.


22nd September, 2019

The Word Alive – Dishonest Stewards? Good Stewards?

The Challenge: Surely Jesus can’t be serious? A steward praised for his dishonesty? The story is a literary and storytelling device to challenge the listeners. The steward is preparing for what lies ahead. Forearmed with friends, bribed to stand by him when trouble comes. And a master who admires initiative and shrewdness when he sees it. But the challenge for us is that ‘money doesn’t make the man.’ Luke wants us to be shrewd, forearmed for an account of our stewardship. It is not what we possess which helps us inherit the kingdom. The Gospel is about the right use of possessions; how we use our gifts.

Slave of Two Masters: Many families today are under huge pressure. Financially stretched, many parents have to work long hours, be away from home, entrust their children to minders. Everyone does their best; many make difficult decisions to possibly work only part-time, at the expense of income; many more just can’t do this. It’s not an option, with mortgages, loans, a second car…. The demands are endless. Often, all seems to revolve around money – or the lack of it! This gospel challenges our priorities, decisions, health, welfare, our faith…… And nobody likes these challenges!

Unpaid Volunteers: Gospels like this challenge our honesty and loyalty, our work ethic and show what money cannot buy!  Thank God for volunteers, for numerous carers and helpers with elderly and sick parents and family at home – and with so little support! Saving state and HSE a fortune, enduring complaints and resistance. Thank God for volunteer fundraisers – raising 20% of Marymount’s running costs. Thank God for Scout Leaders, GAA coaches, trainers, especially at underage level – wotking with young people instilling coping skills, abilities, interests for life which will stay with them – all unpaid. Thank God for voluntary groups like Red Cross, educating and serving health and safety, for ICA and community involvement…. Thank God for the Ministries of our Parish – somany who pray, serve, clean, sing, fundraise, maintain, read…… Life in an Irish Parish is still full of Good Stewards, who use their gifts, demand no pay, deceive nobody, and often, only God fully knows the good they do. But in particular, the stewardship of parents needs support and constant recognition! A lifelong ministry.

AUTUMN STATIONS -TAKERS PLEASE?
The Station Masses are a wonderful tradition. A legacy of the past, where the priest visited certain ‘stopping- places’- (Stations) in each townland, to meet the people, and take the Mass out from the Church into the homes and farms of the parish. It was always a wonderful way to encourage and build up community, as well as provide a more intimate celebration of the Eucharist. Please consider seriously if your family could host a mass for your station area during the next two months or so, and contact Fr Declan. A Station Mass has been arranged for Inniskenny and for Heatherfield for late October. All other areas are available for booking.

EXPOSITION OF THE BLESSED SACRAMENT – WOULD YOU LIKE TO COME?
Volunteers are constantly welcomed to join the regular group of 25 or so who come to spend a quiet hour with Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament. The Blessed Sacrament is exposed on the altar from 9.30 to 12 on Friday mornings and from 6 to 9pm on Wednesday evenings. It’s a great time to spend a while in silence and peace and bring our lives before God. People are welcome to drop in for 10 minutes or any period during that time, but if someone can commit to a longer period reasonably regularly, please contact Fr Declan or Margaret Drinan. It is such a calming and lovely gift to give to yourself and to the parish.

A BALLINORA BLESSING (adapted from Marymount)
(This is used at each meeting of our Parish Council as a mission Statement and as an encouragement to work for an inclusive parish.)
May God the Father make this Church, Parish and Community a safe place, a place of welcome, hospitality and care, full of understanding and acceptance, where one can be as one is.
May God the Son give to each person in this community enthusiasm for their work, peace for their journey, and the support of companionship.
May God the Holy Spirit grant each person who lives here a wisdom mixed with compassion, a presence infused with gentleness and creativity; a faith filled with hope and possibility.
May the blessing of Father, Son and Holy Spirit give to all of us light to guide, courage to support, and love to unite,now and for ever. Amen.


15th September, 2019

The Perfect Family!

Dysfunctional?A One-parent family. A tearaway, rebellious, wasteful, younger son. An angry aggrieved, rigid, older son. A soft-hearted pushover of a father. What a wonderful story told so simply; so true to life even today. Jesus was the master storyteller. It has been said that if we had no other parables or no other biographies of Jesus, this story would show the shockingly new God that Jesus revealed. The perfect Father! A God of love, compassion; breaking social and family rules. A God who stands and waits, rejoices, and doesn’t even want to hear the apology.                                                                                                                                      

 

Black Sheep?What family doesn’t have one? A child who can’t wait to leave home, a child who doesn’t appreciate all that’s been done for them, a family member who squanders on drink or drugs or gambling. A son or daughter who never seems to live up to their potential, breaks their parents’ hearts, and heads for failure. But the door must be kept open, the ring and the robe ready, the fatted calf awaiting. God never gives up on us; we shouldn’t either.                                                      

 

The God many have rejected?How could anyone who knew this God reject him? Are we still worshipping false gods? Are we still clinging to a God of revenge and punishment? A God that maybe we have lost somewhere in the evils of the world surrounding us, forgetting that our God entered this world of sin and redeems it? Forgetting that the God of this story is part of the answer, not part of the problem? Surely every oneof us needs the God of this story? Is there any of us who hasn’t sinned? Is there any of us doesn’t need the God of compassion and love? We may have huge sympathy and understanding for the older brother, but he fails to understand the immense goodness of his Dad. He is also in danger of being consumed by anger, resentment, jealousy and hurt! His F(f)ather doesn’t want that for him – nor for us!

AUTUMN STATIONS -TAKERS PLEASE?
The Station Masses are a wonderful tradition. A legacy of the past, where the priest visited certain ‘stopping-places’- (Stations) in each townland, to meet the people, and take the Mass out from the Church into the homes and farms of the parish. It was always a wonderful way to encourage and build up community, as well as provide a more intimate celebration of the Eucharist. Please consider seriously if your family could host a mass for your station area during the next two months or so, and contact Fr Declan. A Station Mass has been arranged for Inniskenny and for Heatherfield for late October.

Recent Baptisms
Since last March, we welcomed into our Christian community: Ollie Michael Sheehan of Ballinvoultig, Clodagh Elizabeth Hegarty of Earlswell, Tadhg Ronan Vallely of Barret’s Hill, Tommy Roderick Davy of Surrey, Ted Finbarr Crowley of Old Abbey, Róisin Marie Somers of Rathmines, Alison Jacquline Hegarty of Whitechurch, Clodagh Ellie Keogh of Old Abbey; Maggie Roisin Fitzgerald of Dungarvan; Carley Anna Kilmartin of Old Blackrock Rd., Hazel Doreen Rock of Blackrock Rd; James Patrick O’Halloran of Corbally; Grace Catherine O’Riordan of Carrigrohane; Erin Ruth Sheehan of Old Abbey and Rian Vincent Duncliffe of Ballymah..

“COME AND SEE” – A VOCATIONS AFTERNOON
Poor Clare Monastery, College Road, Cork.; Saturday Sept. 21st   2 – 4 pm 2019. For young women considering a vocation; Email: vocationspoorclarescork@gmail.com


8th September, 2019

The Word Alive!

Pope Francis Tweets: Today I read a tweet from Pope Francis asking for prayers for Africa ‘that God the Father of all, may consolidate fraternal reconciliation throughout Africa, which is the only hope for solid and lasting peace.’ One of the first replies was ‘God’s not real pal!’ Another says ‘Surely your god will do whatever he does without your input.’

Many positive replies but many negative ones. We can no longer take it that faith commands respect today, or indeed the Holy Father, despite his efforts to reach out to the poor and suffering of the world.

The Cross:Asked to name somebody who influenced our faith, many would mention a grandparent. But many of the senior generation grew up in a world harsher than today. In the Ireland of the 30’s and 40’s, infant mortality was higher; many people lost siblings or young children. Many emigrants never returned. Many of the curable diseases of today were fatal. But a sense of faith, of God’s love and protection often kept people going. Many of that generation were prepared to ‘carry their cross’. A difficult concept, a difficult thing to do. Jesus warns in today’s Gospel that his disciples must be able to do this. Some of us have difficulty suffering a minor toothache today. The loss of a mobile phone sends us into shock and panic.

Faith Today: How do we cope with setbacks? Do we have a sense of God’s will? Do we trust God to know what is best for us? This doesn’t oblige us to be inactive, fatalistic, waiting passively as the world throws mud at us. Being a person of faith means trying to have a sense of guidance, of prayer through the knocks, avoiding sufferings that are under our control. A favourite saying of Mother Teresa is ‘Where there is no love, put love!’ Have a positive faith filled approach to rejection and hurt – repay it with prayer, forgiveness and love a harder path, a path less travelled, but the path to redemption and resurrection. This is indeed taking up the cross and following Jesus. Every person of faith – even the Pope- has to carry their cross after Jesus.

AUTUMN STATIONS -TAKERS PLEASE?
The Station Masses are a wonderful tradition. A legacy of the past, where the priest visited certain ‘stopping-places’- (Stations) in each townland, to meet the people, and take the Mass out from the Church into the homes and farms of the parish. It was always a wonderful way to encourage and build up community, as well as provide a more intimate celebration of the Eucharist. Please consider seriously if your family could host a mass for your station area during the next two months or so, and contact Fr Declan.

ADULT STUDIES IN THE CATHOLIC CATECHISM
Began Tuesday 3 September 2019; 7.30pm – 9.30pm; contact Máirín at 087 795 0325. It is still possible to enrol.

“COME AND SEE” A VOCATIONS AFTERNOON
Poor Clare Monastery, College Road, Cork.; Saturday Sept. 21st   2 – 4 pm 2019. For young women considering a vocation; Email: vocationspoorclarescork@gmail.com

RECENT WEDDINGS
Congratulations to Fiona Greene and Gavin Duffy, both of Ballinvrinsig – almost next-door neighbours – who married last week. Also we congratulate Ciarán Lyne who married Katy Sheeran in Clonakilty this weekend.

RECENT DEATH
We extend our sympathies to the family of Mark (Markie) Callanan, late of Coolroe Heights Ballincollig, formerly of Ballinora, whose funeral took place in St James’ Church last Tuesday.

GLENSTAL ABBEY
Two Scripture Seminars                                                                        Saturday 5th October: Women in Luke’s Gospel. Through Narrative and Art
Saturday 12th October: Pharisees – Characters not Caricatures


1st September, 2019

Humility – You Must Be Joking!

Individualism: Everything in our culture today encourages individualism. But until a few decades ago we were all encouraged to conform. If you did anything different or stood out in any way you were frowned upon. You were told to go along with things. In matters of faith, everyone more or less believed the same things. Authority was accepted – the authority of the Church was more or less unquestioned. Nobody dared to question. ‘Humility’ was the virtue that was encouraged – shut up, be quiet, and stay in the background. Don’t ever think you’re great.

Questioning:Today, we are encouraged by society to question everything, and to make up our own mind about everything. Self-assertiveness is encouraged to the point of total self-centredness. Everybody has different views about everything, and many believe one person’s view is as good as another’s. It’s a difficult place to be. Confusing and unsettling.

Jesus the Questioner: Jesus was quite a non-conformist. He didn’t accept or conform to many of the social customs like higher places at tables or ranking people in order of importance. In the gospel, he encourages the high and mighty to take their place among the lowest. He encourages service. He encourages the rich host to change the guest list to include the poor and needy.

Self Respect and Service:Service in the proper sense needs us to acknowledge our gifts, and to use them to the best of our ability. So what is humility? Is it always putting yourself down, taking the lowest place? No. It is acknowledging that you are gifted by God, recognising those gifts and using them. But it does acknowledge giving God credit for creating you in His/Her image and likeness. Mary was able to say in the Magnificat: ‘From now on all will call me blessed, because the Almighty has done great things for me. Humility also means acknowledging that others have been gifted by God also! Respecting the gifts of others in a healthy way is very much a proper way of being humble.

WORLD DAY OF PRAYER FOR CREATION:
This Sunday is World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation: an opportunity to renew our commitment as custodians of all that God has created, giving thanks and praise to him.

AUTUMN STATIONS -TAKERS PLEASE?
The Station Masses are a wonderful tradition. A legacy of the past, where the priest visited certain ‘stopping-places’- (Stations) in each townland, to meet the people, and take the Mass out from the Church into the homes and farms of the parish. It was always a wonderful way to encourage and build up community, as well as provide a more intimate celebration of the Eucharist. Please consider seriously if your family could host a mass for your station area during the next two months or so, and contact Fr Declan.

 


15th June, 2019

Drawn into the Mystery of God – Trinity Sunday

A mum brought her three young kids back to the car through the Church grounds. The sun was going down. At the family grave, she led them in making the Sign of the Cross, saying a short prayer for the dead. Such a beautiful intimate scene as they struggled with the formula ‘In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit’ and the gesture. Watching, I was caught up into the mystery of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, the God of Life and Love, the God of the living and of the dead, the God of this world and of Eternity – one God who has created us in his/her own image at our conception, and with whom our lives will find fulfilment. The God who in nature is three equal persons united in love. I joined this family group for a few moments; the spell was broken – but the memory lived on.

Memories:Memories came back of being taught to make the Sign of the Cross by my father, in Irish and in English, before I went to school. If there was thunder, mum with curtains pulled, sprinkling us all with holy water in the name of the Trinity, protecting us from harm. How many times since then have we made that lovely sign of Christian faith, passing churches or graveyards, beginning prayer, entering churches. At Baptism, the priest makes the sign of the Cross on the child’s forehead, saying ‘I claim you for Christ, in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.’ We are drawn into the mystery of God, – Trinity, from that moment. We are God’s family, created, loved, protected, guided, by our God, who is three persons united in love.

Mystery?Why are we surprised that God seems so complicated? All we know about our God has been revealed by our God. The historical figure of Jesus dominates the Gospels, revealing his relationship of love and trust and prayer with the Father;promising to send God’s Spirit to his disciples- a promise fulfilled at Pentecost. And we are drawn into that mystery that is God. We are touched by it. We are formed by it. We are loved by Trinity.

ALTAR SERVERS:
A new team of twenty one Altar Servers from Rang a Cúig will shortly be trained and will take up this ministry as part of their preparation for Confirmation next year. The tradition is well established, and Tríona Fitzgerald and Darina Callanan, our Parish Child Safety representatives have met their parents this week for information and permission, and have helped the new servers to work out a code of conduct. Our sincere thanks to our team for this year, who will shortly be finishing.

ORDINATION OF BISHOP GAVIN
The Episcopal Ordination of Fr. Fintan Gavin will take place at 3pm on Sun. Jun. 30th next. During the Ordination ceremony, the newly ordained Bishop will be accompanied by Bishop Buckley to take his seat on the Cathedra or the ‘ceremonial chair’, which gives the Cathedral its name. Also during the ceremony, the Papal Mandate i.e. the official letter from Pope Francis appointing Fr. Fintan as Bishop of our diocese will be read out. The ceremony at the Cathedral of St. Mary and St. Anne will be relayed to a large screen in St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Skibbereen where people and clergy will join in the ordination by their prayers, hymns and Communion. It will also be possible to view the ordination ceremony which will be live streamed on www.corkandross.org as well as www.corkcathedral.ie

SUMMERTIME – AND THE LIVING IS EASY!  AU REVOIR TO THE BULLETIN!
Everyone needs a break. Everyone needs a holiday. Recreation is Re-creation, an opportunity to renew our Spirits. In our busy stressed world, where so much of our time is taken up constantly ‘doing’, it is so important to take time for ‘being’. It’s so easy to feel we are only worthwhile if we are constantly doing things, constantly productive; every moment filled. Summertime is an opportunity to smell the flowers, to listen to the thrush, to see the colours of nature, to enjoy long evenings…… The Newsletter team and  Fr Declan wish all our parishioners a happy summer – whenever the sun begins to shine. This is our last  edition of the Sunday Bulletin until September.
Slán go fóill!


1st June, 2019

Separation – World Communication Day

Today is Ascension Sunday … those of us of a certain vintage will remember this event celebrated on a Thursday, Ascension Thursday in years gone by.

Today we read of Jesus leaving his disciples and ascending into heaven. This is said to have taken place 40 days after the resurrection. We are told by St Luke that He “blessed them and withdrew from them and was carried up to heaven.”   There is no mention of a tearful goodbye or parting hugs. There is no reference to sadness, loss or loneliness. However at a human level we can imagine the disciples feeling uncertain and apprehensive about the future without Jesus. If we think about times when we had to say goodbye to those we love …… even for a short time, we experience feelings of sadness and loss.

There are many events in our lives where we have to “let go” emotionally….. a child starting school or college, emigration and inevitably death. Many parents will remember the experience of saying goodbye to their son or daughter at the departure gates at the airport…. that last look…. that last wave and the sad journey returning to the family home.

However instead of any of the above feelings being shown by the disciples, we are told that they “went back to Jerusalem full of joy.” They seems eager to begin to “teach all nations” Why? Because they truly believed that Jesus was still with them in spirit and would remain with them as they became witnesses to his life.

In the week ahead let us turn to Jesus when life is challenging in the belief that He is always there beside us to support and help us.

STATION DUES AND EASTER OFFERINGS:
Please return these envelopes for the support of the Priest of the Parish with your contributions as soon as possible. Almost the entire income for a priest comes from the four envelope collections: Spring and Autumn Dues, and Christmas and Easter Offerings. Apologies for asking for two donations so close to each other, due to the late overrun of the Station Masses. Sincere thanks to the area distributors and to Francis Hurley, coordinator.

CALLING ALL TRÓCAIRE BOXES
Very few Trócaire Boxes and Envelopes have as yet been returned. Please make a special effort to return yours as soon as possible, so that the money can be sent on. Boxes and envelopes can be returned to the Sacristy or to Fr Declan.

ORDINATION OF NEW BISHOP OF CORK AND ROSS
In the coming days, each parish of our diocese will receive a limited allocation of several invitations to the ordination ceremony of  Fr Fintan Gavin as our new Bishop, at 3pm on Sun. Jun. 30thin the Cathedral of St. Mary and St. Anne. It will be a most uplifting and historic ceremony. Our parish would like to send a representation, possibly including a family with young people. If interested, please contact Philip Flaherty, Sacristan. In the event of many applicants, it will be decided by lottery.

WORLD COMMUNICATION DAY
As we read of the disciples going out to teach all nations, it is appropriate that we celebrate World Communication Day today. The disciples spread the gospel by personally meeting with and preaching to different communities in widely diverse cultures and countries. They had no internet. They had no social media. They had no radio or TV to spread the Word. Yet they achieved what Jesus asked them to do.
Today in our world it has never been easier to send or receive messages or information. We can communicate instantly to any part of the world. Yet it is ironic that loneliness is a major problem in our society and often leads to poor mental health, depression and suicide. We have moved from a rural based community where neighbours knew and took care of each other to urban living where often people do not know who is living next door.  We text, email or what’s app each other rather than calling to see friends or family. As humans we need social interaction and face to face contact. So this week let’s make an effort to meet and talk!
A notice recently seen outside a restaurant sums this up….. “No, we don’t have WiFi, Talk to each other!”

ANAM CARA
Anam Cara Cork, the organisation that supports bereaved parents, is holding a Remembrance Evening on Wednesday 5th June at 7:20pm at the Lough, Cork, followed by Tea and Coffee in the Hawthorn. This event is free and open to all bereaved parents regardless of the age your child died, the circumstances of their death, or whether their death was recent or not. Please RSVP to info@anamcara.ie or 085 2888888 to help us organise.  Please note there are no Events in July orAugust.


25th May, 2019

Last Wishes of Jesus – 7th Sunday in Easter

As Jesus says goodbye to his disciples, he sees them sad and scared. They feel they are seeing the last of their beloved Master. What will happen when he is gone? Who will guide them now and show them how to proceed? Jesus wants to encourage them by his final words. His great desire is that His Good News of God will not be forgotten. His followers must keep alive the ideal of the Father’s humanizing “kingdom of God.” He wants them to hold fast to what they learned from him. “Whoever loves me will stay true to my words … whoever does not love me do not keep them.”
After twenty centuries, what we have done with the Gospel of Jesus? Do we keep it faithfully or do we care only for our own personal interests? Do we keep Jesus alive in our hearts or are we forgetting him? Do we honestly present his message have we overlaid it with specious, self-serving doctrines?
“I give you my peace” he says. He wants to make our own the special kind of peace that was his welling up from his intimate union with the Father. His peace will blossom in our heart if we accept the Spirit of Jesus. We must never lose that peace. Jesus insists: “Do not be troubled or afraid”.
After twenty centuries, why does fear for the future paralyze us from spreading his peace, his outlook? Why does our church seem so defensive, so inward-looking? There are many people out there who are hungry for meaning, who want to find a more spiritual dimension in life. Pope Francis is a true gift from God for our church today, urging us to appreciate and share the Good News. Our times invite us to move to be more faithful to Jesus and his Gospel Church. (José Antonio Pagola)(From: Association of Catholic Priests)

STATION DUES AND EASTER OFFERINGS:
Please return these envelopes for the support of the Priest of the Parish with your contributions as soon as possible.
Almost the entire income for a priest comes from the four envelope collections: Spring and Autumn Dues, and Christmas and Easter Offerings. Apologies for asking for two donations so close to each other, due to the late overrun of the Station Masses. Sincere thanks to the area distributors and to Francis Hurley, coordinator.

CALLING ALL TRÓCAIRE BOXES
Very few Trócaire Boxes and Envelopes have as yet been returned. Please make a special effort to return yours as soon as possible, so that the money can be sent on. Boxes and envelopes can be returned to the Sacristy or to Fr Declan.

CORK ECUMENICAL BIBLE WEEK 21-26 MAY
Sunday 26th May: The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it. The transformative power of the Psalms to shape our imaginations and our lives towards eco-justice. Dr. Jessie Rogers Sacred Heart Hall, Western Road, Cork. 7.30pm. Cork Ecumenical Bible Week extends a warm welcome to everyone. No booking required.

ORDINATION OF NEW BISHOP OF CORK AND ROSS
In the coming days, each parish of our diocese will receive a limited allocation of several invitations to the ordination ceremony of  Fr Fintan Gavin as our new Bishop, at 3pm on Sun. Jun. 30thin the Cathedral of St. Mary and St. Anne. It will be a most uplifting and historic ceremony. Our parish would like to send a representation, possibly including a family with young people. If interested, please contact Philip Flaherty, Sacristan. In the event of many applicants, it will be decided by lottery.


18th May, 2019

Faith: Living in Love with One Another – and with God – 5th Sunday in Easter

By this everyone will know that you are my disciples – that you love one another. (Today’s Gospel).                                                  “What you are in love with, what seizes your imagination, will affect everything. It will decide what will get you out of bed in the morning, what you will do with your evening, how you will spend your weekends, what you read, who you know, what breaks your heart, and what amazes you with joy and gratitude. Fall in love, stay in love and it will decide everything.                                                Nothing is more practical than finding God, that is, than falling in love in a quite absolute, final way.” (Attributed to Pedro Arrupe, SJ (1907-1991))

 Is married love easy?If only it were! Ask any couple still married after twenty or thirty years. How many times have they differed? How many times have they accidentally hurt one another? How many times has one or both felt taken for granted, categorised, ignored, overlooked, neglected, lonely, stuck in a rut? How often has one of them taken most of the decisions, and shouldered most of the blame? How often has one of them chosen to say nothing rather than risk rocking the boat, and the situation has been buried rather than dealt with? ‘Peace at any price’ has its hidden dangers – often anger and depression come from what has been buried. Listening and patience and openness are needed when hurts arise. Genuine love is a decision, not a ‘romantic’ feeling. To cherish the person; not to always be right.

 Is family love easy? Ask any family! How much jealousy goes on between children? How often do parents find it hard not to love one child more than another? How do you cope with a teenager who doesn’t communicate? Where do you find the time to be mum or dad, taxi driver, advisor, counsellor, listener, coach, homework expert, internet use supervisor, crisis intervention expert? Often at great cost to yourself and your needs. This is real love.

God is in there- in the healing, the reconciliation, the patience, the love!

“Anyone who lives in love, God lives in them, and they live in God” (1 John 14)

STATION DUES AND EASTER OFFERINGS:
Please return these envelopes for the support of the Priest of the Parish with your contributions as soon as possible. Almost the entire income for a priest comes from the four envelope collections: Spring and Autumn Dues, and Christmas and Easter Offerings. Apologies for asking for two donations so close to each other, due to the late overrun of the Station Masses. Sincere thanks to the area distributors and to Francis Hurley, coordinator.

CALLING ALL TRÓCAIRE BOXES
Very few Trócaire Boxes and Envelopes have as yet been returned. Please make a special effort to return yours as soon as possible, so that the money can be sent on. Boxes and envelopes can be returned to the Sacristy or to Fr Declan.
CORK ECUMENICAL BIBLE WEEK 21-26 MAY
The Earth is the Lord’s and Everything in it (Ps 24)
Tuesday 21st May: Ecumenism in Ecology Rev. Elaine Murray Sacred Hearts Church, Monkstown. 7.30pm.
Wednesday 22nd May: We are Stewards not Owners…our Arrogance towards Creation. Fr. Ben Hegarty OP St. Joseph’s RC Church, Springhill, Glanmire. 7.30pm.
Thursday 23rd May: Exiles and Strangers. Dr. Richard Scriven, Old Schoolhouse, St. Michael’s, Church Rd., Blackrock. 7.30pm.
Sunday 26th May: The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it. The transformative power of the Psalms to shape our imaginations and our lives towards eco-justice. Dr. Jessie Rogers Sacred Heart Hall, Western Road, Cork. 7.30pm. Cork Ecumenical Bible Week extends a warm welcome to everyone. No booking required.

ORDINATION OF NEW BISHOP OF CORK AND ROSS
In the coming days, each parish of our diocese will receive a limited allocation of several invitations to the ordination ceremony of Fr Fintan Gavin as our new Bishop, at 3pm on Sun. Jun. 30thin the Cathedral of St. Mary andSt. Anne. It will be a most uplifting and historic ceremony. Our parish would like to send a representation, possibly including a family with young people. If interested, please contact Philip Flaherty, Sacristan. In the event of many applicants, it will be decided by lottery.


4th May, 2019

Blessed Are Those Who Have Not Seen – 2nd Sunday in Easter

reference:    Thomas the Doubter: Thomas makes the Gospels real. John gives him a prominent role because John is the last to write his Gospel. Eyewitnesses who have known Jesus have died. The faith is continuing, but it is harder without direct evidence. Thomas insists on direct proof, wants to touch the wounds, but Jesus speaks to him and offers to show him, and it is enough! He recognises and he believes. The resurrection is not provable. It is the faith of those who have witnessed to Jesus and passed it on. Jesus speaks now through the Word of God – the Gospels especially. He lives on in his followers through the Spirit.

Jesus Breathes on His Disciples:
What an unhygienic thing to do! But he is doing what God did in the account of the creation of the human being in the Book of Genesis –God formed the first human from the dust of the earth, breathed into him and gave him life. The risen Jesus is passing on his own life into his disciples – giving them his Spirit.

Easter Gifts:
Three times in this piece, Jesus says ‘Peacebe with you!’ He is not just calming their fears, but filling them with a gift that only He can give – ‘A peace the world cannot give; that is my gift to you.’ The gift of faith brings calm, trust, hope, freedom from fear and anxiety, freedom from guilt and self-blame, throughForgiveness. Through faith, we know who we are and what we are – not just dust, which will return to the earth, but children of God, made in God’s image and likeness, filled with God’s Spirit. The other gift isJoy: ‘The disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord’. Joy is a special quality of most people of faith. A quiet inner joy of knowing you are loved at the core of your being by God gives a deep confidence in yourself. The Gospels of Easter are awesome! They take your breath away – and fill you with God’s breath!

STATION MASSES:
Sincere thanks to James Lynch and Siobhán Holland who hosted the Ballyshoneen Station last Friday night in the middle of the storm. The attendance was not affected. Tough people on the fringes of the parish not easily blown away! A lovely night of neighbourliness and hospitality.                                           The following morning we had a Saturday Station Mass with Ger and Joe Rigney and family in Ballinvoltig. A lovely peaceful celebration of parish and family, where the invitation of the Risen Jesus ‘Come and Have Breakfast’ came alive for us.

MAJOR CHOIR CONCERT.
Next Friday, May 10th, at 8pm, St James’ Church is the venue for The University of Tennessee Chamber Choir from Chatanooga, hosted by our friends, the Carrigaline Choral Singers. This choir of 30 singers (along with some pieces by the Carrigaline group) will present a varied concert of 90 minutes, featuring beautiful music, mainly sacred music, by various composers.

STATION DUES AND EASTER OFFERINGS:
Please return these envelopes for the support of the Priest of the Parish with your contributions as soon as possible after you receive them. Almost the entire income for a priest comes from the four envelope collections: Spring and Autumn Dues, and Christmas and Easter Offerings. Apologies for asking for two donations so close to each other, due to the late overrun of the Station Masses. Sincere thanks to the area distributers and Francis Hurley co-ordinator.         

EASTER THANKS:
Sincere thanks to all who contributed their time and talents to the Holy Week Ceremonies. To our magnificent choir who worked so hard, to Ursula Mulvihill their conductor, and to Ruth Healy, who accompanied the vast repertoire for the first time. Thanks to Darragh Holmes, to Caoimhe Murphy and Senan Nakajima (6thclass), and to Aoife Murphy and Niamh Meyer (transition year), who played a blinder at the Stations on Good Friday, coached by Joe Rigney and Orla Meyer . Thanks to Anne Moylan Shiels for the flower arrangements; also to Mary Foley and Eileen Lynch for the Easter Garden; to Readers (coordinated by Jeremy Meehan), Ministers of Eucharist (and especially Mary Flynn the coordinator), to Philip Flaherty, Sacristan, to our servers, to Eddie Fitzgerald for the animalfarm, to the Scouts for prayers and to Joe Rigney for Easter Fire. A magnificent team effort for the week!


13th April, 2019

Jerusalem @Ballinora.come -Palm Sunday

This week many of the inhabitants of Ballinora will be gathering to follow the footsteps of Jesus, to waves palms of triumph, to remember his betrayal, to commemorate his journey along the Via Dolorosa as He carried his cross to Calvary, to remember the New Passover in the Upper room – the beginning of the Mass, to have feet washed, to kiss his cross, to rejoice in his Resurrection, light our Easter Fire, and our Baptismal candles and renew our promises. Come to our Parish Church and join us!                                                                                                                                                   Where would we find ourselves amongst the strange crowd of people and characters of the Passion Gospel?

  • The crowd, who loved Jesus when he was famous. Palms, cheers, donkey and procession. But jeers and a crown of thorns only days later. Abandoned Him.
  • Peter who would follow Jesus anywhere, but denied three times that he knew him, cried in repentance and later was told three times to feed God’s sheep.
  • Pontius Pilate, afraid to stand up for his belief in an innocent man.
  • Mary, the mother who received the dead body of her son into her arms.
  • The Disciples, present at Eucharist, falling asleep as He prays, afraid and lost.
  • Simon, helping the criminal to carry his cross.
  • The Good Thief who took pity, and heard Jesus say: ‘This day you will be with me in paradise’.
  • Mary Magdalene. A grieving woman becomes first witness to the Resurrection.

So many we can identify with. So many others -Judas, the weeping women, Veronica….. We’re all there. All human life is there. Jesus has been there, done that. We need to know how real and how near our God is. Come and participate in a real-life pilgrimage that is still so much a part of our lives, as Jerusalem comes to Ballinora. Find your place in the cast, and prepare for the Final Act – Resurrection!

HOLY WEEK 2019
Monday April 15th: Mass at 7.30pm
Tuesday April 16th: Mass at 7.30pm
Wednesday April 17th: No evening Mass.
Penitential Service at 7.30pm
Holy Thursday: Mass of the Last Supper at 7pm;
Holy Hour: 9-10pm
Good Friday:     Stations of the Cross at 3pm;
Celebration of the Passion: 7pm
Holy Saturday:  Easter Vigil: 9pm
Easter Sunday April 21st: Masses at 10am; 11.30am

Please note that there is an extra mass on Easter Sunday at 11.30am.

WEEKDAY MASSES AFTER EASTER
There will be noMass on Monday 22nd or Tuesday 23rd. Weekday Masses will resume at 9am on Wednesday April 24th.

PENITENTIAL SERVICE(‘Not a torture chamber! – Pope Francis)
Come and experience the peace and love and healing and the gentleness of Jesus in our Parish Penitential Service on Spy Wednesday evening at 7.30pm. An opportunity for deep inner healing in a community setting. An opportunity to open up to Easter as a beautiful spiritual time of growth and resurrection. Come and experience what no wealth can buy.

SPECIAL COLLECTIONS:
Holy Places Collection: The collection for the maintenance of the Holy Places – the churches and shrines of the Holy Land mostly under the supervision of the Franciscans will be taken up as usual at the evening ceremony on Good Friday. Diocesan Special Needs Quarterly Collection: This collection will be taken up at all Masses on Sunday April 28th.

EASTER OFFERINGS:                                                              Envelopes are being distributed around the parish for the Easter Dues. Please return these envelopes for the support of the Priest of the Parish with your contributions as soon as possible after you receive them. Almost the entire income for a priest comes from the four envelope collections: Spring and Autumn Dues, and Christmas and Easter Offerings. The remainder of the Spring/Station Dues Envelopes will be distributed in mid-May.

EASTER VIGIL AND EASTER SUNDAY MASS COLLECTIONS:Throughout the Diocese, the Easter Weekend Offertory Collections, (with the exception of the purple envelopes for the upkeep of the Parish), are contributed to the support of the priest(s) of a parish.


30th March, 2019

Ballinora Parish Ministries (2 of 3) –4th Sunday in Lent

We are proud to have a parish with so many ministries, and so much involvement. But almost all of these would welcome new volunteers:

Society of St. Vincent de Paul:Ballinora Parish belongs to the Ballincollig Chapter, though there are many local members and collectors. They form a confidential contact and support group for the less well off; collecting in churches and shopping centres, and distributing aid to those who apply. Contact: Marion Hayes (4872145)

The Legion of Mary: A traditional prayer and action group, with a strong devotion to Mary, mother of Jesus. The members pray each week, visit the sick and the schools etc. Contact person: Norah Minehane (48722

Parish Finance Committee: A small group of parishioners oversee the income and financial affairs of the parish. They meet to discuss expenditure, fundraising, income from return of tax, parish envelopes, repair and maintenance etc. Members: Martin O’Driscoll, Paula Twohig, Gerard Kinnane, Fr. Declan Mansfield. Chairperson: Jean O’Brien (0863864704)

Station Area Representatives and Distributors: These 20 parishioners represent the 15 Station areas and townlands of the parish. They distribute the Easter and Christmas envelopes and the Parish Offertory envelopes. Coordinator: Francis Hurley (0876494677)

The Church Cleaning Ministry: A team of about fourteen people, working in pairs, clean the church and sacristy each week, hoovering, washing, dusting and tidying etc. This voluntary service keeps the church in good order. New helpers are constantly required. Coordinator: Anne Sheehan (0860566066)

The Grounds Maintenance team: A small team of volunteers cut and strim the grass around the church, tidy the graveyard, and keep the grounds in order. New support is needed. Contact person: Barry O’Sullivan (0879438055)

Funeral Support Ministry: Three parishioners are trained and commissioned to offer support to priest and families in the organising and celebration of funeral liturgies. They visit families – by invitation – and help organise and officiate at rosary, home wakes and prayers, removals, reception of remains and funeral Mass. They offer help with music,readings, prayers, mementos, etc, and lessen the stress of a grieving family. Ministers: Michael Galvin, Norah Minehane, Marie McSweeney (4870487). Three new members are in training.

RENEWAL FOR ALL IN MINISTRY IN OUR PARISH:
Tuesday April 2nd; 8:00 – 9.15.Prayer and encouragement for all who serve in all the ministries of our Parish: cleaners, flower arrangers, Parish Council, grounds keepers, Word and Eucharist etc etc (Lots listed above!)

STATION MASSES:
Volunteers are still requested please to host a Spring Station Mass in Ballymah Upper and Lr.; Lower Castlewhite, Upper Castlewhitre, Corbally/Greybrook;  Windsor and Ballyhank,. A station has been planned for Ballyshoneen. Inniskenny,School to Ballinora Cross and Ballinvrinsig.

HOW IS LENT GOING?
Time to take stock? Never too late to begin (again?) A reminder that all weekday Masses for Lent are at 7.30pmin order to give more people the opportunity to attend. Mass for Lent is a way to take time out for yourself and for your needs.

Mícheál Ó Draighneáin – moving on!
Sad news for Scoil Bhaie Nóra, and for the Parish of Ballinora this week, that our wonderful Principal, Mícheál is moving on shortly to new and fresh pastures as Deputy Principal of the Gaelscoil in Ballincollig. For fourteen years he has provided outstanding leadership for a great team of teachers. We thank him sincerely for his great gifts, and the many ways he has used them. He will be greatly missed. On the other hand, we congratulate him, and we send him our best wishes and prayers in his new role, when he takes it up in a month or two. Cógháirdeas agus beannacht Dé ort, a Mhichíl. Gura fada buan thú!

RECENT WEDDING
Congratulations to Sharon Crowley and Bryan Buckley who were married in St. James’ Church on Friday March 15th. May they have a long and happy life together.

 

 


23rd March, 2019

Ballinora Parish Ministries (1 of 3) – 3rd Sunday in Lent
Each Baptised member of the Church is given gifts by the Spirit to build up Parish and community. Gifts used in the service of God and of God’s people – and mostly given freely and voluntarily –  are referred to as ‘ministries’. Most of these ministries would be delighted to welcome more volunteers. In the Parish of Ballinora, our ministries and contact people are:

Ministers of the Word: Readers, usually in pairs, proclaim the Word of God at Masses and other ceremonies. At present, about fourteen people regularly take part in this ministry. Co-ordinator: Jeremy Meehan (0863601624).

Choir Music Ministry:
Adult Choir: About 35 members make up the Ballinora Choir. They sing at the 7pm vigil Mass from September to June, and at all the major Feasts. They rehearse for a half hour before the Mass; only for Christmas and Easter are extra rehearsals required. The high standard of the choir leads to occasional requests to sing elsewhere, and they have sung frequently in concert with Liam Lawton. Organist: Brian Keegan; Conductor: Ursula Mulvihill (4872777).

Junior Choir and Folk Group:from time to time a small youth group sings t the 10am Mass. Music is modern and lively. This choir also sings on Christmas and Easter mornings. Commitment is light. Occasional rehearsals. Leaders: Niamh McCarthy (0877631925) and Jennifer Murphy.

Ministers of the Eucharist: Scheduled in pairs, these ministers distribute the Body of Christ at weekend Masses. Some of them also bring Communion to the residents of Norwood Grange Nursing Home on Sundays, and a few serve in Marymount. A small group of Ministers of the Eucharist and Word also occasionally lead a Service of Word and Eucharist on a weekday morning when the priest is absent. Coordinator: Mary Flynn (4876730)

Altar Servers:
Some boys and girls of sixth class in Scoil Bhaile Nóra volunteer to take on this ministry for a year as part of their faith commitment for their Confirmation Year. They assist at the weekend Masses. Parental consent is obtained, and child protection guidelines strictly adhered to under the supervision of the Parish Child Protection Representatives.

Child Protection Observance and Contact Ministry:
Tríona Fitzgerald (4875950) andDarina Callanan (0872309279) have been trained to ensure best practice in all areas of church ministry involving young people; to ensure Garda vetting, signing and permission, training of servers etc. They are also available to help with the reporting of issues to the Diocesan authorities.

RENEWAL FOR ALL IN MINISTRY IN OUR PARISH:
A Date for your Diary: Tuesday April 2nd ; 8-9.15.

Prayer and encouragement for all who serve in all the ministries of our Parish: cleaners, flower arrangers, Parish Council, grounds keepers, Word and Eucharist etc etc….(Some listed above!)

STATION MASSES:
Volunteers are still requested please to host a Spring Station Mass in Ballinvoltig/Ballinvrinsig; Ballymah Upper and Lr.; Lower Castlewhite, Upper Castlewhitre, Corbally/Greybrook;  Windsor, Ballyhank, Inniskenny/Ballintannig, and School to Ballinora Cross. A station has been planned for Ballyshoneen.

The Station Mass for the area from Maglin to Dineen’s Lane will take place in the home of Catherine O’Mahony next Friday night, March 29th, at 8pm

CORK SCRIPTURE GROUP TALKS:
Tuesday, 26th March at 8.00pm: Rosalie Moloney: “‘And God saw that it was good’: The Book of Genesis and Tomorrow’s World.”.
Tuesday, 2nd April at 8.00pm: Sr. Nellie McLoughlin RSM: “The Wonder of Creation: The Miracle of Life”.
Tuesday, 9th April at 8.00pm: Tom Kelly: “Night train – the extraordinary world of bird migration”
Venue:  The Crypt, Church of the Descent of the Holy Spirit, Dennehy’s Cross, Cork.
Each talk  45 minutes, followed by questions, answers and chat over a cup of Fairtrade tea or coffee.

HOW IS LENT GOING?
Time to take stock? Never too late to begin again. A reminder that all weekday Masses for Lent are at 7.30pmin order to give more people the opportunity to attend. Mass for Lent is a way to take time out for yourself and for your needs.

TRÓCAIRE THIS LENT
Please keep up the contributions into the Trócaire boxes any time you make a sacrifice for Lent.

RECENT BEREAVEMENT:
Our sincere sympathies to all the family relatives and friends of Philomena Lyne whose Requiem Mass was celebrated in St James Church last Monday. We remember especially her son Donal and her daughter and son in law Kay and Brian Lougheed with whom she had lived for many years.


16th March, 2019

The Prayer of St. Patrick – Lúireach Phádraig –  2nd Sunday in Lent

Also Known as St Patrick’s Breastplate – a Shield against Evil

(A ninth century Irish Prayer attributed to St Patrick)

I arise today in power and might

I call upon the Trinity, with faith in threeness

And trust in the oneness of the world’s great Maker.

I arise today in the power and might

Of Christ’s birth and baptism,

His crucifixion and burial

His resurrection and His ascension

His coming anew to judge mankind.

I arise today in love of cherubim,

In duty of angels, in loyalty of archangels,

In hope of uprising to gain life’s reward.

I arise today with the power of heaven,

The sun in brightness, the moon in splendour,

The flashing of fire, the swift stroke of lightning,

The rushing of storm-wind,

The deepness of ocean, the firmness of earth,

The hardness of bedrock.

I arise today, God’s power for my pilot

God’s might for my upholding,

God’s wisdom for my guiding. God’s eye as my outlook,

God’s ear for my hearing, God’s word on my tongue.

God’s right hand to guard me, God’s path for my treading,

God’s shield for my protecting,

God’s host for my defending against all that would wish me ill.

Christ be with me, Christ within me, Christ behind me, Christ before me

Christ beside me, Christ to win me, Christ to comfort and restore me.

Christ beneath me, Christ below me, Christ behind me, Christ before me

Christ beside me, Christ to win me, Christ in hearts f al that love me;  Christ to comfort and restore me.

 

RENEWAL FOR ALL IN MINISTRY IN OUR PARISH:

A Date for your Diary: Tuesday April 2nd; 8-9.15.Prayer and encouragement for all who serve in all the ministries of our Parish: cleaners, flower arrangers, Parish Council, grounds keepers, Word and Eucharist etc etc….

TRÓCAIRE BOXES
Please take a Trócaire box for your home this weekend and make a regular donation during the six weeks of Lent. A full account of the work of Trocaire can be seen on their website: www.Trócaire.org. It is well worth seeing the projects and the way all money collected is spent.

WEEKDAY MASSES:
A Reminder that all weekday Masses for Lent are at 7.30pm in order to give more people the opportunity to attend. Mass for Lent is a way to take time out for yourself and for your needs.

STATION MASSES;
Sincere thanks to Niall and Helen Tyrell (and Grace), who hosted the first Station Mass at their home last week. Two grannies and an auntie added to the occasion. Some fine singers!Volunteers are still requested please to host a Spring Station Mass in Ballinvoltig/Ballinvrinsig; Ballymah Upper and Lr.; Lower Castlewhite, Upper Castlewhitre, Corbally/Greybrook;  Windsor, Ballyhank, Inniskenny/Ballintannig, and School to Ballinora Cross . A station has been planned for Ballyshoneen, and Maglin to Dineen’s Lane.

PERSON OF THE YEAR:  
Congratulations and best wishes to Margaret Drinan who has been nominated as Ballinora Person of the Year. Margaret has worked for years as a member of the ICA and produced millions of cups of tea. She continues to care for many people behind the scenes, and constantly fundraises for so many charities.

TRÓCAIRE THIS LENT
You will  eat and have all you want and you will  bless Yahwehyour God in the fine country which he has given you.” Deuteronomy 8:10.
This year’s Trócaire Lenten campaign highlights the different ways land is stolen from vulnerable people in the developing world. It could be by corporate land grabs, by war or simply because they are a woman. To find out more visit www.trocaire.org. Please take a Trócaire box this weekend and make a regular donation during the remaining weeks of Lent.

CORK SCRIPTURE GROUP TALKS:
Tuesday, 19th March at 8.00pm: Fr. Diarmuid Ó Murchú: “Keeping Hope Alive in our Troubled Times”.
Tuesday, 26th March at 8.00pm: Rosalie Moloney: “‘And God saw that it was good’: The Book of Genesis and Tomorrow’s World.”.
Tuesday, 2nd April at 8.00pm: Sr. Nellie McLoughlin RSM: “The Wonder of Creation: The Miracle of Life”.
Tuesday, 9th April at pm: Tom Kelly: “Night train – the extraordinary  world of bird migration”
Venue:  The Crypt, Church of the Descent of the Holy Spirit, Dennehy’s Cross, Cork. Each talk  45 minutes, followed by questions, answers and chat over a cup of Fairtrade tea or coffee.

CHILDREN’S LITURGY:
We welcome the return of our Children’s Liturgy at the 10am Mass each Sunday. It is a lovely ministry to our young people. Please bring your younger children to the Sunday 10am Mass, where they are appreciated and included.